“Ms. Driscoll is fascinating in that she makes such utterly original work. It doesn’t look like anything you’ve ever seen before, nor can you imagine thinking it up.” —Roslyn Sulcas, The New York Times

New York, NY (December 2, 2020) New York Live Arts, under the artistic leadership of world renowned choreographer, Tony Award-winning, National Medal of Arts, MacArthur “Genius” Award and Kennedy Center Honors recipient Bill T. Jones and Associate Artistic Director Janet Wong, announced Faye Driscoll as the 2021-22 Randjelović/Stryker Resident Commissioned Artist (RCA). The award is one of the most substantial awards for a choreographer in the United States and a significant vehicle for midcareer artists.

In light of this recognition, Faye spoke with The New York Times about the residency and work. Click the button below to check it out!

The RCA award artist receives two years of full-time salary, healthcare benefits, full-time access to dedicated office space during the entire residency period, creative funds, a technical theater residency and fully-produced production. Since the creation of the program in 2011,
Randjelović/Stryker Resident Commissioned Artists have been Yasuko Yokoshi, Kyle Abraham (MacArthur Genius Fellow 2013), Okwui Okpokwasili (MacArthur Genius Fellow 2018), RoseAnne Spradlin, and Raja Feather Kelly, whose world premiere of the dance-theatre speculative documentary WEDNESDAY was postponed to Live Arts’ 2021 season.

Driscoll notes, “I am tremendously grateful, and wholeheartedly relieved, in the middle of this deeply uncertain time to know that I have the next two years at New York Live Arts to create. It is something profound, to feel the deep nervous-system grounding that a steady salary and health insurance provide—I’ve never had both! It’s something I wish for all humans. As artists, we are always vulnerable, and the pandemic has heightened that experience. The support offered by the Randjelović/Stryker Resident Commissioned Artist program is holistic and visionary. It is this kind of vision that our field needs to thrive. I am excited to get to work closely with the Live Arts team, and to make Live Arts my creative home—from the studio to the stage to the lobby to the office spaces.”

As the sixth RCA, Driscoll begins her residency after completing her lauded multi-year Thank You For Coming series of performances that reimagined the relationship between the creator and her audiences. Known for crafting an alchemy of bodies and voices, objects and live sound, Driscoll opens new intimacies that grapple with power and presence, as well as yearning and absence. In her new range of explorations — which began pre-covid — Driscoll extended these inquiries into exhibitions and audio works, moving into new realms of exchange. Her recent Guided Choreographies for the Living and the Dead are a series of guided experiences that take place in gallery spaces, theaters and at home. The new work to be premiered as part of her RCA residency will continue this foray into the possibilities and impossibilities of human connection in our time. Driscoll asks: Who or what do we allow to touch us? Lovers, parents, friends, grocery store clerks, data miners, surveillance systems, facial recognition software, and drones? How are we altered? Where is our body, and how far does it extend?

Faye Driscoll is a performance maker and artist who has been hailed as a “startlingly original talent” (Roslyn Sulcas, The New York Times) and whose most recent exhibition was celebrated as “experiential training in how to inhabit this unbearable new world” (Miriam Felton-Dansky). Her work has been presented nationally at the Wexner Center for the Arts, Walker Art Center, The Institute for Contemporary Art/Boston, MCA/Chicago and BAM/Brooklyn Academy of Music, and internationally at La Biennale di Venezia, Festival d’Automne à Paris, Croatian National Theatre in Zagreb, Melbourne Festival, Belfast International Arts Festival, Onassis Cultural Centre in Athens and Centro de Arte Experimental in Buenos Aires. Her first solo museum exhibition, Come On In at Walker Art Center in 2020, offered gallery-goers an experience of six distinct audio-guided choreographies. Driscoll also choreographs for plays and films, including the Broadway production of Young Jean Lee’s Straight White Men, and Josephine Decker’s award-winning feature film Madeline’s Madeline. Since 2013 she has received many prestigious awards, including Doris Duke Artist Award, United States Artist Fellowship, Guggenheim Fellowship, and Creative Capital Award.

“Faye is one of the most daring makers of her generation, an artist that is impossible to box in. She has distinguished herself working with her company, as a performer, in the theater world, and even as an installation artist. Faye is fearless and restless, she goes towards what scares her,” share Live Arts artistic leadership Bill T. Jones and Janet Wong. “Working collaboratively across multiple disciplines, she invites challenges, defies expectations. She is tough minded, and recognizes the tenor of the fractiousness of our current discourse and responds with  resourcefulness, generosity and profound instinct of showmanship in the best possible way. We invite Faye to make our home her home. It is our hope that the RCA award will provide her with the security to imagine and create powerful work, and to continue building the infrastructure for a sustained career.”

Since its inception, the Randjelović/Stryker Resident Commissioned Artist program has received lead support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and has been named for lead donors Jon Stryker and New York Live Arts Board of Directors Vice-Chair Slobodan Randjelović. The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation continues to be instrumental in one of Live Arts’ signature programs for artist development, and its ongoing support is vital to the continuation of the program.